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Bahrain Travel Guide

Basic Facts of Bahrain

Area: 750 sq km (290 sq mi)
Population: 1,380,000
Location: West Asia
Capital: Manama
Currency: Dinar
Time Zone: UTC+3
Language: Arabic, English
Administrative Division: 5 provinces
Religions and Beliefs: Islam, Shiah
National Flower: Azalea

Country Description

The Kingdom of Bahrain, usually Bahrain for short, is located at the west of Asia. It is an island country tucked in the southwest of Persian Gulf, with a small archipelago surrounding the main island. To the west of the country is Saudi Arabia; the two countries are connected by King Fahd Causeway. To the north and southeast of the country are Iran and Qatar Peninsula respectively. Generally speaking, people in the country enjoy a tropical desert climate. The country with beautiful scenery enjoys a high reputation as a Pearl in Persian Gulf. Coconut palms and natural fountains scattered on this land are worth a visit.

Top Things to Do in Bahrain

Bahrain with a long history has many famous attractions. When going there, visitors can visit hot destinations, explore the history of the country, go shopping, take part in local activities, and taste the delicious local food. Here are several hot tourist destinations which are highly recommended.

Al-Fateh Great Mosque, aka Al-Fateh Islamic Center or Al-Fateh Grand Mosque, is located in Manama. Originally built in 1987, it can accommodate more than 7,000 prayers at one time. It is not only the largest mosque in Bahrain, but also one of the largest mosques all over the world.

National Museum, close to King Faisal Highway, was first opened in 1988, covering an area of 278,000 sq m (69 acres). It is one of the largest and oldest museums in the country. The museum displays many historical collections from the Stone Age to modern times, giving tourists a chance to learn the history of the country.

International Automobile Circuit is unique because it’s adjacent to the desert. This circuit can hold at least 45,000 people. March and April are the busiest months here. Many motorcycle racing events are held here in March and April each year, making it a famous attraction site. It will be a lot of fun to visit this place and experience the thrill of motorcycle races.

Best Time to Visit Bahrain

November to March is the best time to visit the country because of the pleasant and warm weather during the day, as well as cools night and temperate rain. The temperature is between 20 and 25 ℃ (68-77 ℉). Tourists are advised to take both short/long sleeved T-shirts and warm clothes because the temperature varies between day and night. If going there during this period, tourists will be able to participate in the local festivals and activities, thus having a good opportunity to deeply learn about the local culture and customs.

Transportation

As of now, rail service is unavailable in the country. Tourists can only get around by bus, taxi, chartered car or bicycle. The country has a relatively sound highway transportation system. Major towns can be reached by public buses, but it takes long time to wait for buses. Tourists can enter the country by air and road. Tourists can enter the country from Saudi Arabia via King Fahd Causeway. The country has 5 airports and Bahrain International Airport is the major one which operates many international air routes to/from Dubai, Cairo, Delhi, London, Doha, Hong Kong, Manila, Paris, etc. There is no domestic flight.

Bahrain Travel Tips

1. Don’t go there during Fast or pilgrimage period.
2. Don’t drink unboiled water. Wash vegetables and fruits before eating.
3. Middle East political issues shouldn’t be mentioned when taking with locals.
4. The food may be expensive because almost all of them are imported.
5. Wine and photos or statues of female shouldn’t be given as gifts.
6. No Israel products or products with Israeli labels are allowed to bring into the country.

History

Bahrain, as the original birthplace of the ancient Dilmun Civilization, enjoys a long history of more than 5,000 years. Towns, streets and stone houses have been built by Sumerians on Bahrain Island 3,000 years BC. This land was later ruled by Persian Empire and Sassanid Empire since the 6th century BC. After many years of changes, the Bahrain Emirates is founded as an independent country on August 14th, 1971. The country then built diplomatic relations with many countries and became a famous tourist destination. In 2002, the country was renamed as the Kingdom of Bahrain and is a constitutional monarchy at present.

Geography

The country consists of about 33 unequal-sized flat and arid islands, including the largest Bahrain Island. The terrain is hilly, low-lying and rocky. The main island rises higher and higher from coast to inland. The highest altitude is 440 feet (135 meters). Low desert plains can be found in most parts of the country, while escarpments are in the central part.